Government denies student claims that 10,000 will lose funding.
Controversy over the allocation of government grants for students grew this week as the Education Ministry released figures in an attempt to quell fears that more than 10,000 will lose funding, but student leaders remain unconvinced.
Changes to student grants cited as key factor in largely peaceful march that ended with isolated confrontations between police and ‘encapuchados.’
Organizers claim more than 80,000 marched for education reform in downtown Santiago on Wednesday with large demonstrations also taking place in Valparaíso, Concepción and other cities across the country. Carabineros, Chile’s uniformed police force, estimate only 37,500 attended the march.
In the shadow of presidential elections, Chile’s confederation of student unions continues to pursue free education.
Thousands are expected to march in Santiago on Wednesday as the student movement seeks to influence the outgoing government’s last opportunity to legislate, and take steps toward meeting some of its demands for sweeping reforms.